Nothing says a drive through Washington State like Cascade snow-tipped mountain tops, Pacific Northwest spruce, hemlock, maple, cedar and oak, with a thousand shades of green, and Pearl Jam Radio on Sirius. Pearl Jam and the Pacific Northwest is like the Tragically Hip and Ontario’s Muskoka region – it just fits.

The first stage of a drive down the U.S. west coast, behind the wheel of the brand new BMW M850i Coupé luxury car, began in sparkling British Columbia sunshine. Three hours later down the U.S. 101 we were sitting in impossible rush hour traffic, in the pouring rain, outside of Tacoma, finally ending up in Aberdeen.

The M850i is equipped with a Harman Kardon Surround Sound System with 16 speakers, a precise acoustic experience. We enjoyed every minute of it. The car’s wide centre console rises up to the instrument panel, all arranged for easy access so the driver never loses focus on the road. The interior of the car sets such a high standard – marked by the sporty, red leather climate controlled driver and passenger seats, for maximum comfort. Surprisingly (considering it’s May), what also came in handy was the heated steering wheel.

The Head-Up Display is another “must” for long-distance drives. The destination programmed into the navigation system also pops up on the Head-Up Display, with voice command instructions on where you are heading – harkening us back to being lost driving in Los Angeles 15 years earlier, with just a paper map in our hands. Times have very definitely changed.

There is a very handy feature that enables the driver to monitor speed levels – the car reads the current speed limit and displays that on the Head-Up Display in white numbers, next to the speed you are actually doing. If you go over the speed limit that number turns orange and it’s time to slow down. The car will also sound a “ding” if you program it to warn you when you are closing in on the speed limit.

The BMW M850i is powered by a TwinPower Turbo V8 engine – watch your speed! Start your journey with the M850i here.

STARTING LINE, THURLOW STREET, VANCOUVER